It’s Money Season: Five steps to less stress in your money life

Seasons change – winter, spring, summer and fall. We have a holiday season, hockey season and bathing suit season and we have Money Season.  Each brings up specific images, memories, decisions and actions. With the January to April Money Season in full swing, images and memories will come up and decisions will need to be made. We have all had to make choices around our money and we have all certainly made good ones and bad ones over the years.  For many, Money Season is cause for extra stress and anxiety.  A BMO study showed that the looming March 3rd RRSP deadline causes stress for 60% of Canadians, often causing them to make rash decisions. More than 70% of Americans say that tax filing is stressful or very stressful and studies show that this stress leads to health issues, more fatal car accidents and more challenging relationships. Reduce your stress, get better results and have more fun with your money by taking time and taking action now – before the deadlines arrive.  Here are five great steps that you can take to make your Money Season merry. Your life does not get better by chance. It gets better by change. ~Jim Rohn  Get clear on what is important  We spend all kinds of money on things we don’t care about, and often don’t even want because we don’t have a compelling reason not to. Instead of following the oft-given advice to tracking expenses, start your money life game plan by getting clear on what is important to you. When you have a compelling reason to do something differently, it...

Boxing Day: Five tips to keep the merry in the holiday

Believe it or not, Boxing Day does have a history that isn’t about shopping.  The day after Christmas was traditionally the day that servants and tradespeople had off, and they received a gift from their employers – their Christmas Box.  It is now a bank holiday, and an opportunity to spend an extra day with family and friends, relaxing and eating leftovers. In recent history, Boxing Day has become a day for massive shopping expeditions. Post-holiday sales used to start in January, but in the last few decades, sales have begun on the 26th.  This shopping day now rivals the American Black Friday with early openings, insane crowds, long lines ups and anti-social behaviour.  Electronics stores, in particular, will have 50-100 people in lines for hours before the stores open. Crazy, I know, and I invite you to skip the chaos and the possibility of overspending.  However, if you are determined to head out to the stores, have fun and start with these five tips. Decide how much you will spend Know your numbers – what you are willing to spend and what your stopping point is.  Consider leaving the credit cards at home and using cash.  It will help you stick to your plan. When you run out of your planned money, go home! Do your research Heading out to wander around the mall with no plan is a recipe for overspending.  Be clear on what you want to purchase.  Check in to see if it fits your overall goals and be clear on what a regular price is so you know if you are getting a deal...

Gratitude: Improves Your Health and Your Wealth

In our “see it-want it” society of instant gratification and high expectations, it is easy to feel like you don’t have enough and even that you are not enough. Money challenges can begin to define how we feel about our life.  You might feel like you are failing if you don’t have all the things what your friends have or what you think you deserve.  Envy, jealousy and frustration can rise up when others seem to be doing better or life isn’t going your way. When you are feeling low, frustrated or even bitter it can be tough to make positive changes in your money life. Attitude of Gratitude Making change starts with gratitude.  Researchers who study gratitude have shown that it is directly linked with greater happiness. Gratitude helps people: Feel more positive emotions Appreciate good experiences Improve their health including sleep and stress Deal with adversity Build strong relationships Money may feel like a challenge right now, but it doesn’t define who you are.  Actively appreciating what you have, who you are and what you bring to the world can shift your mindset and the energy in your money life. Take Stock Spend some time examining your life.  Be a detective and search out all of the ways that your life is already wonderful.  Don’t stop at your stuff.  Take a look at tall of the areas of your life. Possessions – If you took a look at your stuff from the outside, how wealthy would you appear? You may have forgotten how fortunate we are just to be living in the Western world. Skills – Recognize...

Who loves ya? Some great new people!

I have been in Atlanta, GA this last week at a great event put on by my mentor, Suzanne Evans. I am constantly reminded about the amazing power of community. We have been talking about how my community can be of service to you and I am super excited! Click on the video to meet some of these great people in my community. Over the next number of months they will share very best of what they know. Our first guest article is today! Don’t miss the article where Nancy Forrester shares some of the brain science around our money stuff. Click here to read the...

Creativity and Flexibility

What a crazy balance of work, fun, travel and family time.  This week I got to travel with my good friend Odette Laurie from Business Women on Top to Murrell’s Inlet, SC to film videos with Hell Yeah Studios.  I have the video bug now and you will see more of my self-recorded ones.  The fancy professional ones will be ready later in the fall.  Can’t wait to share them with you! I love the flexibility of my work – that I can bring it with me to South Carolina, or to my sister’s cottage, or to my back deck.  What can you create in your life that gives you opportunities for creativity and flexibility? This week’s article will show you another kind of creativity – finding the $$ for a project.  I hope you enjoy our adventures. Live, Laugh,...

Are you squashing your dreams?

We are dreamers by nature.  The hallmark of human existence is imagination, exploration, and achievement.  Humans have created amazing civilizations by dreaming and taking action on those dreams. Sometimes the dreams are huge and real and sometimes they feel like wisps in the wind. And when our lives feel small and complicated, we forget to dream.  It happens bit by bit.  You start feeling pressure to keep up and then to pay for the lifestyle you have created.   Despite making a great income, you still feel broke.  Money becomes the problem, the elephant in the room, the enemy.  Things can feel hard, like you are never going to get out of it, so you stop dreaming and stop taking action towards what you really want. Without leaps of imagination, or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning.  ~Gloria Steinem Dreaming is expansive and creative.  It moves us forward.  When we allow ourselves to dream about what we really want, we create compelling reasons to change the way we are doing things.  We create a desire to have that dream, and we begin to take steps towards making it a reality. When we don’t allow ourselves to dream, when we squash down those dreams and distract ourselves, we end up looking for the pleasure of the dream in other, often unhelpful and self-sabotaging ways.  We might eat excessively or spend money to soothe ourselves; we might stop giving to others, trying to keep whatever we have.  We play small, hoping that everything will work out and we end up feeling worse –...